Sunday, August 15, 2010

Bringing Home Benjamin

Happy Birthday Ben! It's been one month since Ben's birth and I haven't told you a thing about him, for shame! Allow me to introduce you to the newest member of Team Chopsticks.

Ben was born 8 lbs 10 oz and with a full head of dark hair... when we say a full head of hair, we don't mean that his head was covered with typically baby-fine peach fuzz. We mean he was born with a FULL head of HAIR. Like, he has a mullet and the hair on the sides is growing over his ears. This kid has sideburns. His eyes are still blue, and like all good, superficial parents, we are secretly hoping they'll stay that way, even though we know they likely won't. My genetics background knows better.

He snorts when he's hungry, he buzzes like a tiny bee when he has to burp. When he drinks, his right eye closes and his left eyelid twitches up and down in rhythm with his gulps. Sometimes he brings his wee hands up and clutches them together under his chin. Sometimes he clutches at his cheeks in some sort of ecstatic frenzy (I do NOT like it when he does this, but it reminds me to cut his fingernails.)

He's a social fellow, our little Bento. He likes people. He likes to sleep ON people. One of his major pet peeves is being placed in a swing chair or crib once he's fallen asleep. Can you imagine the audacity! He is enraged. He'll sleep upright in your arms, or curled up under your chin, or sprawled across your chest; he's not picky. He just wants to be with people. When he's mad, he stands perfectly upright in your arms, little fists clenched. He throws his head back (because he's beginning to hold it up now) and cries stridently. He loves to rest his head on your shoulder, arms outstretched. When he goes to sleep in his crib, his arms must be thrown up overhead. If you swaddle him with his arms contained, he'll grunt and squirm until they're free.

At one month old, he weighs just over 10 pounds. He's beginning to track movement with his eyes, and he loves to gaze at our photo wall, though I think it's more the contrast of the black frames against the wall than the actual photo content. He's a champion sleeper... during daylight hours. At night he averages two hours between feeds, and he's very alert in the mornings, during his daily French lessons with Grandma. When he's drifting off to sleep we see him smile gently, sweetly. His Grandma says he's seeing angels, an explanation I like very much, because I tell myself he sees the people that would have loved him tremendously, had they been here to do so.

All in all, a typical newborn, but he's ours. Sometimes I still can't believe it.

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